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How we fund research

As a member of the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC), we’re committed to high standards when selecting applications for funding. All of the research projects we fund have gone through a rigorous international peer review process. This ensures that were funding the best quality science thats relevant for people with muscle wasting and weakening conditions. 

The selection process

Scientists who apply to us for a grant must complete both a scientific and a plain English application. 

The scientific application 

This is a detailed description of the project, its related costs, and any ethical considerations, such as the use of animals or human samples. 

The application then goes to peer reviewers all over the world who are experts in the field of muscle wasting and weakening conditions. They provide a detailed and objective critique of whether the project is worth funding, is achievable in the proposed time frame, and contains any weaknesses in the experimental design. 

The plain English application 

This is less detailed and written in a way that someone who is not an expert in the field can understand. 

This application goes to our Lay Research Panel. Everyone on the panel either cares for someone with a muscle wasting or weakening condition, has a child with a condition, or lives with a condition themselves. A care advisor also sits on the panel. The panel plays a critical role in ensuring we fund research that meets the needs of our community.  The panel reviews every application carefully to assess whether – and how – it will benefit people with muscle wasting and weakening conditions. An independent scientific advisor is available to answer any scientific questions the panel might have.   

The approval process

Once both applications have been reviewed, they are sent to our Medical Research Committee, together with peer reviewer’s comments and feedback from the Lay Research Panel. This committee comprises of up to 15 scientific and clinical experts in the field of muscle wasting and weakening conditions and two members of the Lay Research Panel. 

The committee meets once a year to discuss and score the applications. A recommendation is then made to our Board of Trustees about which projects should be funded. 

The whole process takes roughly nine to ten months, and it’s how we make sure that everything we fund stands the greatest chance of improving the lives of anyone with a muscle wasting or weakening condition.   

Get involved in our research

Join the lay research panel

Our Lay Research Panel works closely with our Research Team to evaluate applications for our research grants. It is made up entirely of people affected by muscle wasting or weakening conditions.

Contact us about research

If you have any questions about how we fund research, email our research team